The serious ailment known as narcissistic personality disorder (NPD) has a lifelong impact on those who have it. All aspects of your life, including relationships, your job, and your personal growth, can be impacted by narcissism. NPD is one of the notoriously difficult personality disorders to cure. The difficulty increases when people do not recognize that they are having a problem. That being said, a narcissist is capable of changing if they put up the necessary effort, willpower, and dedication.
It’s critical to keep in mind that narcissists are capable of change if they are sincerely committed and willing to develop. Some people might be more conscious of their actions and more motivated to improve. Sadly, nothing is known about whether or how narcissists can change. We have little information on how change might occur, despite the fact that we are becoming more and more aware of this state in contemporary society.
A complicated disorder known as narcissistic personality disorder is characterized by an inflated ego, grandiose behavior, and little empathy for other people. However, it’s crucial to keep in mind that personality disorders are a spectrum disorder, just like any other mental health conditions. Because of this, certain cases might be milder than others, making adjustment simpler for such persons.
There are various narcissistic characteristic subtypes, and each has issues with undergoing change. For instance, a covert narcissist might appear more defenseless and insecure. Their behavior may be more subtle and passive-aggressive, which can be perplexing to loved ones. A communal narcissist is more concerned with playing a significant part in society. They place a high priority on having a clear mission or purpose in the world, and they may position themselves as martyrs. Finally, a malignant narcissist may have the most problem modifying their conduct because they share features with sociopaths in that they like hurting others to satisfy their own demands.
It might be difficult to tell if someone truly wants to improve because personality disorders can be so subtle. If they feel threatened by your departure, someone might make a change-related pledge. They might also make clumsy changes in an effort to draw you back in. For these reasons, it is crucial for your wellbeing to be aware of narcissistic abuse.
Following are six indicators that a narcissist may be willing to change:
1. They Take Personal Accountability Right Away
In general, narcissists try to avoid taking responsibility for anything that might reflect poorly on them. They occasionally may minimize, explain away, or outright lie about their actions. So it’s a good sign if they take personal responsibility for their choices.
Personal responsibility inevitably calls for certain openness and modesty. After all, when someone accepts responsibility, they admit to themselves and others that they were wrong. If a narcissist can do something repeatedly, it might indicate that they are genuinely working on cultivating humility.
2. They Pay Attention to Your Comments
Giving and accepting feedback can be difficult for most individuals.
2 We frequently worry about being rejected or coming out as too harsh because we want other people to like us. Nevertheless, narcissists frequently overreact to genuine or imagined unfavorable criticism. As a result, they can start acting violently, withdrawing totally, or verbally abusing others. Sometimes they’ll try to ruin your reputation to get back at you.
Therefore, it’s a good sign of progress if they truly listen to your suggestions without becoming defensive. It indicates that they are showing receptivity to your arguments. Even though it may be unsettling, they value your opinion rather than presuming they always know what’s best.
3. They Pay You More Attention (and Others)
Forging relationships with people, active listening is a crucial communication ability. However, narcissists frequently engage in one-sided interactions. They hang out with people who respect, give attention to, or otherwise validate their wants.
Change therefore occurs once they are able to let go of the urge to feel like the centre of the universe. Start by genuinely caring about other people’s lives, then inquire thoughtfully without passing judgment or engaging in gossip. It’s a good sign if you see them making an ongoing effort.
4. They Display Improved Emotional Regulation Capabilities
Narcissists frequently have emotional outbursts in response to pressure or embarrassment. To get attention and get what they want, they could scream, beg, demand, or act aggressively. Self-destructive behaviors, such as substance abuse or self-harm, may be exhibited by some.
Thus, improving stress management is essential to recovering from narcissism. It’s a good indicator if you observe increased mindfulness and tolerance for unpleasant feelings. It indicates that they are making an effort to accept their feelings more and respond to them less.
5. They Sincerely Apologize When Reverting to Old Habits
Regrettably, relapse occurs frequently with all mental health conditions. Such regressions can be brought on by stress, schedule disruptions, and the onset of other mental health problems. Narcissists who wish to change, however, are aware of their habits. As a result, they are able to spot any undesired behaviors early on. As a result, they will promptly endeavor to change their bad habits and apologize for their errors.
These apologies must come off as sincere and uncalled for. An insincere apology, for instance, can involve holding you accountable for their conduct. A phony apology could turn their feelings against you.
6. They Are Reliable
Consistency is key, above all. Even if they make an effort to be a decent lover, friend, or parent for a week, it won’t be enough. You must observe sustained attempts for development and advancement.
A narcissist who is willing to grow will understand that building trust and feeling safe takes time. They will be aware that they must win your trust again if they have betrayed you in the past. If you continue to be cautious, they won’t rush you or get impatient.
It’s never easy to change, especially when trying to treat personality disorders. But rehabilitation is achievable if a person has the awareness, readiness, and openness to change.